Monday, June 27, 2011

GranFondo Kelowna - July 16th 2011

For 3 weeks every July since 1903, between a half and a third of France’s entire population line the streets to watch the Tour De France. Wow! But this spectacle (now a widely televised event around the world) can’t really be experienced unless you’ve already booked a trip to the Pyrenees, Vosges or the Champs-Élysées. Instead this summer, you can find something equally exciting locally here in British Columbia called RBC GrandFondo Kelowna.

The term “GranFondo”, translated from Italian meaning “Big Ride”, will need BIG efforts from locals and people from all over BC to ride, cheer, and volunteer. On July 16th 2011, the inaugural race will commence in downtown Kelowna and eloquently spin 115km winding its way through the Okanagan Lake Country to Vernon and back to Kelowna again.

So, special events require special people to help make them happen. If you haven’t decided to enter the race, and you’re not sure who exactly to cheer for, the GranFondo Kelowna is recruiting volunteers to assist in a variety of roles. These roles could include greeting the riders at package pick up, to helping with the event set up and event tear down, bike corralling, course safety marshaling, handing out rider refreshments, assisting in the celebration plaza, and keeping the cheer alive in the Family Fun Zone.

Besides getting front row seats to behold the 1200 cyclists, and meeting 300 fresh volunteer faces, each helper will receive a logo’d GranFondo t-shirt, lunch, and refreshments. In addition to this, (as if it could get any better…) you will also receive some skookum kit from the GranFondo partners at Lululemon and RBC, attain some valuable work experience, and obtain an official volunteer letter as a ‘thanks’ for your contributions. There are volunteer positions available on July 14th, 15th and 16th and typically last from 4 – 6 hours. You can also be involved in multiple volunteer roles if you’re really spinning your wheels to get involved. We hope to see you at the start line!!

To register, visit where you can learn more about the positions that are waiting for you. Please direct all inquiries to

Get fit and get active.


Monday, June 13, 2011

The Stanley Cup

That’s Hockey EH!!! It’s hard not to feel a swell of patriotic pride when seeing the enthusiasm alive in Vancouver for Canada’s favorite pastime. Yes, I’m talking about the Stanley Cup. Tonight, in game 6 of the NHL finals, the Vancouver Canucks have taken the lead against the Boston Bruins in the series (3-2), which has created an opportunity to signal the end of a 96 year battle to bring the Stanley Cup to Vancouver. “Rah-rah-rah!!”

All the Canucks have to do tonight is WIN!!! Lose, and they’ll get a second chance on home ice in game 7 this Wednesday. But let’s not talk about that right now.

So about that cup… The Stanley cup is the oldest professional sports trophy in North America. It was Lord Stanley of Preston, the governor general of Canada from 1888 to 1893 who donated the famous cup in 1892. It cost him a hefty $48.67. Lord Stanley was known as a devoted British sportsman who helped create the world of organized sport that dominates our culture today. I’d also like to take a moment to recognize that he also donated the land which is now Stanley Park. What a guy!

A few other Hockey Firsts:

1843: First written reference to hockey on ice: A British army officer Arthur H. Freeling, stationed in Kinston, wrote in his diary: “began to skate this year, improved quickly and had great fun at hockey on the ice.”

March 3, 1875: First reported indoor game of Hockey: appeared in the Montreal Gazette.

1876: First reported use of the word puck: “What the puck was that?”

Feb 27, 1877: First printed playing rules for hockey appeared in the Montreal Gazette.

1881: The first know photograph of a team wearing a hockey uniform. McGill University Club.

1883: The first hockey championship trophy: the Montreal Winter Carnival Cup, won by McGill. It wasn’t for another 10years that the Stanley Cup was first presented.

Dec 8 1886: The first organized hockey league: the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association with 5 teams: McGill, Montreal Amateur Athletic Association, Montreal Victorians, Montreal Crystals, Ottawa Hockey Club.

June 15, 2011: First time the Vancouver Canucks win a Stanley Cup…??? ... and FAILED!!!

Origin of the Puck: Believed to derive from the Scottish and Gaelic word puck or Irish word poc, meaning to poke, punch or deliver a blow.

Hockey is believed to have several derivations. The most common seems to be the old French word hoquet, meaning curved stick or shepherds crook.

Alright hockey fans… just remember to keep your stick on the ice.